By Michelle Mortensen
What do Joe Biden, Taylor Swift and Don Cheadle all have in common? They have totally bought into the bizarre conspiracy theory President Donald Trump is having mailboxes removed nationwide to obstruct mail-in voting in the upcoming presidential election. It’s a total lie. The facts clearly show that is not happening in any way, shape or form but that hasn’t stopped anyone from spreading the lies on the bane of all existence, Twitter.
That’s right, Twitter is to blame, in part, for this fake news. This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone reading this, after all, it is a platform that allows people to pontificate in 120 characters or less.
It is rarely accurate. It is always inflammatory and almost everything “trending” on twitter is beyond ridiculous. Even so, this social media outlet is the source of “news” for far too many individuals today. If you haven’t caught what I’m saying yet, let me be very clear: Twitter is a waste of space and should not be a place you go to for real or important information.
Case in point, this mailbox hoax. It all began with a tweet. The tweet shown above alleged mailboxes were being taken away. This tweet spread like wildfire even though it contained no facts, the statement wasn’t verified, and we have no idea from the picture if the boxes are coming, going or otherwise. But who needs the truth on twitter?
That fake news was enough for people like Joe Biden though. He started using the lie to raise money almost immediately.
“They’re going around literally with tractor trailers picking up mailboxes,” Biden said at a virtual fundraiser, according to reporter Holly Otterbein. “You ought to go online and check out what they’re doing in Oregon. I mean, it’s bizarre!”
That’s all it took to set this fake news ablaze like a roaring wildfire in the Santa Ana winds. So what’s the truth? What’s really happening in Oregon?
According to an investigation by KATU, the ABC station in Portland, Oregon, the White House has had nothing to do with the removal of mailboxes. The local USPS is simply replacing old boxes with new ones. WOW!!!!!
So, a simple fact check reveals everything Biden says was a lie. But does that stop the likes of pop stars, movie stars and former presidents from spreading the lies? No.
Here’s Taylor Swift’s oh so important take. Here’s what Don Cheadle had to say. Even worse Former President Obama continued the spread of this false narrative, blatant propaganda with this tweet.
Tweets of fake news, false narratives, and propaganda like those above literally create the problems we as a nation have right now.
Most Americans don’t trust anyone or anything. They don’t trust the media, they don’t trust law enforcement, they don’t trust politicians, they don’t trust science, but they blindly trust unverified tweets from celebrities and take it as gospel. So, if you are interested in the truth, keep reading. The reason these postal boxes are being removed in the aforementioned twitter pic, was for them to be replaced. That’s right, according to Postal Service spokesman Steve Doherty, boxes are removed regularly as part of their standard procedure whenever they become rusted, require paint, get vandalized, or simply need to be replaced. This is done every single day across America, but no one really paid attention until now when they could use it for political gain.
The lack of funding in the USPS has also become quite a topic of discussion on twitter and among political types. Yes, everyone loves to opine how USPS is mismanaged and has no cash. Funny how this has never been an issue until now, even though the mismanagement and lack of funds in the USPS has been a longstanding problem for decades. Oh, and the biggest reason for the lack of funds is that huge pension program they have that the postal UNION demands. Yes, that same postal union of employees that just endorsed Joe Biden. Are you connecting the dots yet?
The postal service has its issues. Yes, things get lost in the mail or delayed, but we all use it every single day. You rely on it to pay your bills, to get your stimulus checks, and all those birthday cards from your grandma filled with cash. You’ve trusted the mismanaged postal service for years, so why is it a problem now? Because pundits on the right and left want something to blame if their candidate doesn’t win in November. They want there to be doubt and all they need do to create doubt is tweet. It is like a scene from the Netflix show “The Umbrella Academy.” One character on the show has a secret power where all she has to say is “I heard a rumor” to someone and they do or believe whatever she says. Her superpower is basically Twitter, because all one has to do today is tweet, “I heard a rumor” and people believe it.
Now, don’t get me wrong, there are huge and legitimate concerns about mail-in elections. I laid out the facts about that last week. If you missed that column, you can check out last week’s issue. The concerns with mail-in voting really aren’t about the USPS’s ability to handle the ballots but the open door it creates for fraud and corruption. Now more than ever we need to trust the electoral process, but the democrats, celebrities and twitter trolls are doing all they can to erode that trust. 2020 has become the year of propaganda, narrative and viruses and I don’t like it one bit. This year is more than half over. I can only hope and pray we get back to truth and transparency before it is too late.
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Michelle Mortensen is an 8-time Emmy winning TV journalist who has been featured on ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox, MSNBC & NBC. She is a two-time Republican candidate for public office, a small business owner, consumer advocate and political commentator. She is the Founder and Chairman of Building A Better Nevada and sits on the board of WIN Nevada. She holds two degrees from Southern Methodist University and is a licensed minister. A wife and mother, Michelle is featured on various news and talk radio programs. Follow her at www.michellemortensen.com, and Facebook.com/michellemmortense
By Michelle Mortensen